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Source: De Ware Tijd
The funeral of paramount chief Gazon Matodja of the Ndyuka nation will take place somewhere in the first week of March. An exact date has not yet been chosen. Maroon dignitaries are currently in the village of Drietabbetje, the chief’s residency, to prepare for the ceremonies. A funeral date will be chosen based on the results of certain rituals, among which the daily consulting of an oracle and the making of offerings.
The government of Suriname is funding the funeral with a sum of 500.000 Surinamse dollars (about 150.000 US dollars). The money is paid on a project basis; every time a certain amount is needed, it must be requested from the department of Regional Development. So far, the funds have been used to send building materials, fuel and food to the area, as well as financing the visits of two government delegations. Part of the money will be spent on a wake in Paramaribo, which is to take place in February. Another part is to be used on chartered flights to bring to Drietabbetje the paramount chiefs of other Maroon (Saramacca and Matawai) and Indigenous nations (Trio and Wajana).
District Commissioners Margaretha Malonti and Naltus Naana doubt that the sum awarded by the government will stretch to cover all funeral expenses. Most likely, they say, the Ndyuka community will be asked for a contribution.
Paramount chief Gazon Matodja died on 1 December of 2011.